Halobetasol propionate is a medication used on the skin to treat various skin conditions. It belongs to a class of drugs called corticosteroids. Corticosteroids are hormones that are produced naturally by the adrenal gland.
What is halobetasol propionate used for?
Halobetasol propionate can be used to treat a variety of skin conditions, including eczema, psoriasis, and dermatitis. Halobetasol propionate is typically applied to the affected area of skin once or twice daily. Halobetasol propionate is also available in the form of an ointment, cream, or lotion. It is important to follow the instructions of your healthcare provider when using this medication.
Halobetasol propionate brand names
Halobetasol propionate is the generic name of the drug. The following are the brand names of this drug:
Ultravate, Ultravate X, Bryhali, Lexette
Which body parts should be avoided when using halobetasol propionate?
Use this medicine only topically. However, unless specifically instructed to do so by your doctor, avoid using it on the face, groin, or underarms.
Avoid getting the medication in your eyes while applying it close to your eyes because doing so could exacerbate or even start glaucoma. Avoid getting this drug in your mouth or nose as well.
Only use this medication as prescribed to treat the specified ailment. Apply as indicated, but do not use it more frequently or for a longer period of time than your doctor has advised.
How long does halobetasol propionate stay in your system?
The amount of time that halobetasol propionate stays in your system is dependent on the duration of use of the medicine. Some research suggests that suppression of cortisol levels is still apparent 96 hours after topical use of corticosteroid creams, which implies that halobetasol propionate can stay in your system for long periods of time, possibly for up to a few weeks. Halobetasol propionate is not recommended for long term use. More research is required about the half-life of halobetasol propionate and how long it stays in your system.
According to the NHS, for people who use halobetasol propionate for extended periods of time (more than 12 months in adults), a withdrawal reaction may occur which can include:
- redness or changes in skin color (hyperpigmentation)
- burning, stinging, itching or peeling of the skin, or oozing, open sores
What are the side effects of halobetasol propionate?
According to Mayo Clinic, the use of halobetasol propionate can have side effects. Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- Blisters under the skin
- burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, “pins and needles”, or tingling feelings
- dry skin
- flushing or redness of the skin
- hives or welts, itching, skin rash
- raised, dark red, wart-like spots on the skin, especially when used on the face
- thinning of the skin with easy bruising, especially when used on the face or where the skin folds together (eg, between the fingers)
- unusually warm skin
Incidence not known
- Blistering, burning, crusting, dryness, or flaking of the skin
- redness and scaling around the mouth
- scaling, severe redness, soreness, or swelling of the skin
There are certain potential side effects that often do not require medical treatment. During therapy, these side effects could fade away as your body gets used to the medication. Additionally, your healthcare provider might be able to provide you with information on how to avoid or lessen some of these adverse effects. If any of the following side effects persist, are troublesome, or if you have any questions about them, speak with your doctor:
- Acne or pimples
- burning and itching of the skin with pinhead-sized red blisters
Incidence not known
- Burning, itching, and pain in hairy areas, or pus at the root of the hair
- increased hair growth on the forehead, back, arms, and legs
- lightening of normal skin color
- lightening of treated areas of dark skin
- muscle aches
- painful blisters on the trunk of the body
- reddish purple lines on the arms, face, legs, trunk, or groin
- redness or swelling in the ear
- sore throat
- stuffy or runny nose
- unusual tiredness or weakness
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Why does my skin burn when I apply halobetasol propionate to my skin?
If your skin burns after applying halobetasol propionate to your skin, you may have an allergic reaction to the steroid cream and your skin cannot tolerate it. Halobetasol propionate also contains cetostearyl alcohol which may cause acute allergic reactions.
How do I taper down from using Halobetasol propionate?
To taper down from using Halobetasol propionate many doctors advise adjusting to using a weaker steroid cream over an extended period of time. This is commonly known as climbing down the topical steroid ladder.
Which steroid creams are weaker than halobetasol propionate?
Halobetasol propionate is a super-potent topical steroid cream according to the Topical Steroid Potency Strength Chart. Below are the topical steroid weaker than halobetasol propionate:
- Betamethasone dipropionate
- Augmented betamethasone dipropionate
- Augmented Diflorasone diacetate
- Diflorasone diacetate
- Mometasone furoate
- Fluticasone propionate
- Triamcinolone acetonide 0.5%
- Betamethasone valerate
- Fluocinolone acetonide
- Hydrocortisone valerate
- Triamcinolone acetonide
- Betamethasone valerate 0.1%
- Clocortolone pivalate
- Hydrocortisone butyrate
- Hydrocortisone probutate
- Hydrocortisone valerate 0.2%
- Alclometasone dipropionate
- Desonide 0.05%
- Hydrocortisone 0.5% – 2.5%
Which steroid creams are stronger than halobetasol propionate?
Below are the topical steroids stronger than halobetasol propionate:
- Augmented betamethasone dipropionate
- Clobetasol propionate
- Augmented diflorasone diacetate
- Diflorasone diacetate
- Flurandrenolide 4 mcg/cm2
What happens when you use halobetasol propionate too often?
If you use halobetasol propionate too frequently or for an extended period of time, tolerance or tachyphylaxis to that potency level of steroid cream may develop. Halobetasol propionate is not recommended for extended use which may result in some of the common side effects listed above. Consult with your doctor if you have concerns.
Does halobetasol propionate cause topical steroid withdrawal?
More research is required to understand the complexity of Topical Steroid Withdrawal and its specific connection to halobetasol propionate. Halobetasol propionate is a highly potent corticosteroid commonly used for skin conditions and the side effects of discontinuing the use of this topical steroid medicine is yet to be studied.
Throughout online groups and communities, there are serious concerns, accounts, discussions and images about corticosteroid creams (not just halobetasol propionate) causing Topical Steroid Withdrawal. The accounts and experiences of the Topical Steroid Withdrawal community continues to grow and has gathered media wide attention for the aesthetic physical severity of many suffering.
Topical Steroid Withdrawal is an iatrogenic health phenomena that requires more research and studies. The International Topical Steroid Awareness Network (ITSAN) is currently building a patient registry to begin preliminary studies.
Is there treatment for Topical Steroid Withdrawal?
Currently, there is no global protocol or medical treatment for topical steroid withdrawal. At TSW Assist, we are identifying crowd sourced insights of products, routines, and therapies that can help manage the inflammation and symptoms during the withdrawal period from topical steroids. Currently, there is no quick cure for Topical Steroid Withdrawal.
Through the community, we are finding insights of the management of the symptoms of TSW, through the tracking of the efficacy of specific products, methods and therapies.
Disclaimer: The information on this website is not medical advice. There is no known medical cure for topical steroid withdrawal, but there are collective methods to manage the symptom and inflammation during the withdrawal period. It should not be mistaken that all usage of steroid creams will cause topical steroid withdrawal. More clinical research is required to understand the cause of Topical Steroid Withdrawal within an individual.